We could have scored the first goal and maybe it would have [changed] the game and we should have equalised with [Andre Ayew's] chance.
Liverpool are certainly testing their fans' nerves with their end-of-season form, repeatedly handing other teams opportunities to take the initiative in the top-four race.
And with the pressure firmly on, Jurgen Klopp's side produced one of their most commanding performances of the season in a wholly one-sided affair.
Fifth-placed Arsenal, who have a game in hand, are four points behind them.
And they responded with a thumping victory against the Hammers after goals from Daniel Sturridge, Philippe Coutinho (two) and Divock Origi.
"These players did so good this season that we are in the situation we are, 73 points - and nobody gives you 73 points as a present".
"We could have scored the first goal with [Sam] Byram, we should have equalised and the third goal was a odd decision", said the Hammers boss. We had to work for it. We showed what we are about today.
"We just know that if we turn up", Collins concluded. "And play like we did last week we can beat anyone".
"Nobody will go into this game and underestimate Middlesbrough".
However, going into the penultimate weekend of the season, they are still not assured of a place in European football's elite club competition.
The situation opens the door for Sturridge, who has not played 90 minutes in the Premier League since the 1-1 draw with Chelsea in May previous year.
A brilliant response to the drab display last week with Southampton was presented at the London Stadium as Klopp's side scored four with no reply.
Sturridge - a fringe player since Klopp's arrival on Merseyside - has been linked with a move away from Anfield in the upcoming transfer window, but the England man was quick to dismiss the rumours. 'He's had his best training week, part of everything and he had a fantastic game.
'But Roberto still felt the muscle, so there was no chance.
Glenn is ESPN FC's Liverpool correspondent.